Singapore Life Hacks You Need To Know

Because all good things must be shared. Sometimes, at least.

*Updated on 23 October 2014 – added more hacks sent in by readers.

1. Cheaper parking in Orchard Road

If the open air carpark next to Wheelock Place is full (very likely), try parking at Shaw Centre/Shaw House instead. The hourly rate is cheaper than other shopping centres in Orchard Road ($1.07 for the first hour, $1.07 for sub 30mins) and it’s $3.50 per entry on Sundays, or after 7pm on other days. If you’re in the Somserset area, try Orchard Central or 313@Somerset.

Shaw House(Source: Wikimedia Commons)

 

2. Free phone charging service at ION Orchard

If you’re in town and your phone is dying, just approach any of the ION Orchard concierge counters at B3, L1, L2 or L4 to charge your phone for free. The staff there are usually quite helpful, so you don’t have to feel paiseh about asking. ION Orchard also has free wifi.

ION Concierge(Source: evonnz.com)

 

3. Call this secret taxi line when you’re out of other options

Not sure if we should be sharing this, BUT we know what it’s like to be stranded in the rain without a taxi. If your usual apps like GrabTaxi or ComfortDelGro aren’t working for you, try calling Lake View Radio Taxi at 6254 1117. The rates are pretty reasonable and the taxis are not dodgy or anything. Don’t say we didn’t let you in on this secret ah.

Taxi Singapore(Source: taxisingapore.com)

 

4. Use the cargo lift in shopping centres to avoid waiting for crowded lifts

Um, so we’re not sure if this is against the rules or anything…but trust us, the cargo lift is way faster than the regular lift when it’s crowded. It takes some snooping around to find the cargo lift, but it’s usually located in a quiet corner or along a back corridor. Or you could just ask someone who’s pushing a delivery cart, because most shopping centres don’t allow those in the regular lifts.

Crowded Lift(Source: myms.com.au)

 

5. Cheaper entry into Sentosa

The next time you want to go to Sentosa, consider going in the late afternoon instead of in the morning. The entry fee is only $3 if you enter after 5pm on weekends and Public Holidays, or $2 after 5pm on weekdays.

Or you can avoid the entry fee completely by parking at Resorts World Sentosa, then taking the free Sentosa Bus to your location of choice. The parking at Resorts World Sentosa is not that cheap though, so not sure how much more you’d save by doing this?

Sentosa

 

6. Free entry to the Singapore Zoo on your birthday

Yes completely free, but it’s only valid on the date of your actual birthday (remember to bring your I/C for verification). You’ll also get a free ice cream, 10% off retail and F&B at the zoo and a special badge that entitles you to a little special treatment at the zoo (read: the staff will sing you a birthday song whenever they see your badge). Free entry also applies to the River Safari and Night Safari.

Singapore Zoo(Source: Wikipedia)

 

7. Save on gym membership fees

Forget paying thousands of dollars for a commercial gym – just head down to your local community centre for a no-frills workout instead. The gym may not be as fancy (read: no pleasant counter girl to hand you towels), but they do have basic necessities like lockers, air-conditioning and a water fountain. Fees may vary based on the community centre, but they can go as low as $160 per year ($130 if you’re a PAssion Card member). Most of the gyms have daily, monthly and half-year membership packages, which are great for frequent travellers (and lazy people).

Community Club Gym(Source: hougangcc.org.sg)

 

8. Request for a Special Meal when you’re flying with SQ

You know how sometimes it seems like the flight attendant is taking forever to get to your seat with your meal? Just request for a special meal (i.e. gluten-free, low-fat, low-calorie) when you buy your ticket, and your meals will be served before the rest.

[Edit: Um, so it seems we’ve met with some disapproval regarding this hack. Yes, you probably don’t get ice cream or a tastier meal, but it’s a trade-off I suppose? Some people don’t mind waiting for a normal meal, while some people would rather just eat quickly and then go back to sleep. Chillax yo, no one’s forcing anyone to order a Special Meal.]

Singapore Airlines Meal(Source: Wikimedia Commons)

 

9. Redeem free stuff with Perx

Download the Perx app on your phone to collect points when you spend at participating stores like Koi, Subway, Yoguru and more. When you’ve collected enough points, the app will notify you to redeem your reward at the counter. We’ve redeemed everything from a free wrap (worth almost $10 OK!) to a complementary upsize for our favourite KOI drink.

[Edit: So apparently you can also download the Maki-San app (They have customisable sushi rolls and salad bowls!) to get 20% off when you order through the app. The app is only available on the iTunes store though, and the offer is valid for a limited period only. No harm trying anyway. Thanks Jia Yu for the tip!]

Perx

 

10. Evening bakery discounts

Not many bakeries openly state that they have an end-of-day discount, but if you hang around an hour or so before closing time, you’ll probably get a good discount on the pastries there. After all, they can’t sell those pastries the next day right? (If they do, then shame on them. And yuck.)

Don’t quote us on this, but we hear the Delifrance at Jelita has 50% off after 8.30pm.

[Edit: We got a heads up that the Secret Recipe at CPF Building has 50% off every Friday after 6pm. Is that amazing or what?! Thanks Kaneko for the tip!]

[Edit: Another tip from a reader – the bakery inside Ang Mo Kio MRT station (just before the entry gantry) has a discount in the evening. Apparently it’s $1 for all items an hour before closing time.] 

[Edit: Try lingering around the Cold Storage meat section just before closing time. Apparently the roast chicken and pork knuckle can go for up to 50% off. Thanks Nicodemus for the tip!]

Pastries(Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Do you have any other Singapore Life Hacks to share? Email us or leave a comment below, so we can add it to this list!